Super Easy Parmesan Kale Chips

Awhile ago I did a huge amount of research on green smoothies and playing with what different veggies and fruits I could put together for the biggest punch and best flavor. Along the way I discovered kale. Kale is one of the healthiest greens around, though probably one that takes a little getting used to in the taste department. I’ve had good success with it in smoothies, mixed with bananas and flaxseed, but I’ve heard so many good things about kale chips I’ve wanted to try them. Funny thing is they are pricey, yet they seem so easy to make – so I thought I’d give it a go.

Cool Mama Tip

I’ve found that kale can wilt pretty quickly if not used within 3-4 days. The great thing about making kale chips is that you can use wilted kale and the chips taste just as good as the ones made with fresh kale. You get all the same nutrients and best of all you don’t waste any food!

Because kale chips come out so fine and are so crunchy, it is difficult to dunk them in anything without them crumbling to bits. So if you find that you want any extra flavoring, you need to add it into the baking stage (the way I’ve added Parmesan). My little guy is a pretty adventurous eater, he ate these and gave them a thumbs up. But, if you’ve got a little dude that doesn’t like veggies you can experiment with a flavoring that might entice them to try these.

wilted kale on the left and fresh kale on the right

Leapin’ for LeapPad Giveaway

Leapin' for Leap Pad Giveaway

Welcome to the Leapin’ for Leap Pad Giveaway!

This giveaway event is organized by ShePromotes and sponsored by a group of fabulous ShePromotes bloggers! We’ve come together to offer you one of the hottest children’s products of the year — the Leap Frog Explorer Tablet! Even better, as part of the event, you will have the chance to enter to win 1 of 2 Leap Frog Explorer Tablet prize packs! Yes, we are giving away 2 to 2 lucky winners!

How to enter

Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter for your chance to win. The giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents, 18+ and will be open through 11:59pm EST on February, 29th. You have until the end of the day on Leap Day to enter for your chance to win!

Please note that there are two separate Rafflecopter forms. Each prize package has its own form and its own entry requirements. You will earn bonus entries for entering on both Rafflecopter forms! Enter to win the other prize package here!

Good luck and get Leapin’ for Leap Pad!

****Please click “read more” if the Rafflecopter does not load***

How to Read Organic Labels

I’ve mentioned organic food before as an easy way we can all try to eat healthy. This video was prompted by a conversation I overhead with 2 female friends at the grocery store. They were looking at the organic chips and biscuits. One was picking up boxes of goodies and throwing them into the cart without a second glance at the ingredients, the second friend was questioning her choice in ‘organic’ product. Anyways, it was a good discussion on natural vs organic and the different levels of organic that we can find in our food.

I hope this video helps you think and not take the word ‘organic’ at face value when shopping. Make sure to read the ingredients as well. And as for the word ‘natural’, it most definitely does not equal ‘organic’.

What organic foods, if any do you try to add to your grocery list?

Cool Tip for Mamas

If you enjoyed this post, make sure to come back on Friday, February 17 when I will be giving away a Horizon Dairy pack (estimated value $50) as part of the Baby Birthday Bash. The Grand Prize for the Giveaway Event will also include a $200 Family Getaway!

12 Days of Valentine’s – Breathe Deep

Welcome to day 10 of the 12 Days of Valentine’s Love Yourself! Today is about breathing deep. Once upon a time I was really into Bikram Yoga. I lost well over 10 lbs through the practice, increased by strength and flexibility as well as minimized stress. Even though I don’t get to practice regularly, their are still a few key poses that I bust out for a variety of reasons

  • To combat stress
  • To relieve stomach aches and pains
  • to stretch out my cramped up back and shoulders

Those are just some of the situations in which I use yoga. But without a doubt, the one pose that has been the most beneficial to me (and I promise it will be to you too!) is Breath of Fire or Belly Breathing (Kapalbhati in Vajrasana). I essence, you relax the shoulders and sit either crossed legged or with your knees under you and let your belly hang out. The you do quick successive breaths from your belly, pushing it out each time. Often times when we are stressed, we tense up our stomachs, so this is a fantastic way to relax the tummy while clearing your head. A good way to test if you are doing it properly is to stick your belly out and then put one hand on your belly. You should feel your tummy dropping forward with each breath.

Even if you’re not a yogini, trust me, breathing and getting rid of stale air from inside your body while bringing in fresh oxygen is a real pick me up.

Check out this infographic for more stress relief ideas using yoga.

12 days of Valentine’s: Ask For Help

Monkey #2 and Grannie, both madly in love with each other

Welcome to Day 9 of the 12 Days of Valentine’s – Love Yourself! Today’s challenge is pretty easy, ask for help. I can’t stress it enough that we all need help and shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help when we need to grab a bit of zzzzz, get out of the house for some fresh air, or just to get some headspace. I unfortunately am lacking in a really vast support network here in New York, but I’m working on it. For the time being, I have to reach out to my husband friends and family who are the closest in Canada. In the meantime, I am actively working on increasing my network of friends. I’m inherently a social person, I need people!

It takes a village to raise a child   - African Proverb

A few weeks back my husband unexpectedly needed to head off to LA for work. My parents had both talked about coming soon, but I wasn’t sure if they could organize their lives in less than 5 days to come help out. I very stoically said to my husband, regardless, he should go and I would manage with my 4 year old and less than 3 month old. I almost didn’t even ask if they could come, which was ridiculous when I look back on it now. I mean, why wouldn’t I NOT ask. As my mother said, “that’s what mothers are for. As much as I can, and when I can, I will help.” Well, she managed to make it on very short notice and stay for 5 days. I actually don’t think I would’ve coped without her and it was a great bonding moment all around for grannie, my daughter and me.

So who do you go to to ask for help?

12 Days of Valentine’s – Eat Yourself Happy (part 2)

Welcome to part 2 of 12 Days of Valentine’s – Eat Yourself Happy! Chocolate, glorious chocoalate! Where would we be without you? Probably a few pounds lighter I’d say. I am a MASSIVE fan of chocolate. I can’t have the stuff in the house or else it all has to be eaten, all at once. I grew up loving milk chocolate but have recently really began to understand the benefits of dark chocolate and furthermore raw 100% cacao.

If you indulge moderately in 100% raw cacao you will feel satisfied without it going to your hips, plus their are so many health benefits. Watch the video to find out more. If you missed part 1 on how to eat yourself happy, check it out here.

KiwiCanadian expat adventures with my husband and 2 kids from life in New Zealand to New York and back again. Adventures in inspired family living, travel, health & fitness and what we get up to in and around Auckland.Read More »